One of the biggest concerns for families when a loved one needs senior care and housing is how they will afford it. However, a limited budget doesn’t mean it’s out of reach. In fact, funding senior care and housing may be more affordable than you think. Here are five options that can help.
- Veterans Aid & Attendance Benefit
Wartime veterans or a surviving spouse may be eligible to receive a non-service-connected pension (above the basic pension) to assist in funding senior care if you meet certain conditions including military service, medical, and financial requirements.
- Long-Term Care (LTC) Insurance
LTC insurance can help in funding senior care by covering services typically not covered by health insurance, Medicare, or Medicaid. However, it is typically necessary to be in good health to qualify so it’s a good idea to plan ahead. Plus, the older you are when you purchase the policy, the more expensive your premium might be.
- Life Insurance Conversion
If you have an in-force life insurance policy you may be able to convert it into a pre-funded financial account that disburses a monthly benefit to help in funding senior care. Unlike life insurance, this account is a Medicaid-qualified asset.
- Reverse Mortgage
This is a type of home equity loan for homeowners 62 or older who want to access their equity to help in funding senior care. The lender makes payments to the borrower based on a percentage of accumulated equity, and the loan must be repaid when the borrower dies, sells the home, or permanently moves out.
- Current Assets as Collateral
You may already have more options for funding senior care available to you than you realize. Consider selling or renting your home, for example. What savings, stocks, bonds, or annuities do you have? Not to mention income such as Social Security or a pension. Any or all of these can help towards senior care and housing.
Funding Senior Care Versus Living at Home
Many families assume it’s always cheaper to use at-home care, but it has its costs as well, both in dollars and in emotional toll.
First, the cost of living at home isn’t just mortgage or rent. You must include what you pay for food, utilities, home maintenance, property taxes, insurance, and entertainment because these things are typically included in the monthly cost of senior care and housing. Of course, you’ll also need to factor in the cost of at-home care and/or home modifications, too. All told, staying home may end up costing more in some circumstances!
Second, typically, when a loved one stays home, family members take on more of a caregiving role. The emotional toll of caregiving is often more than families realize. Caregivers are often raising children, at the same time; in addition to the stress of trying to balance it all, relationships can suffer with children and spouses as you’re pulled in so many different directions. Over time, it can also affect your relationship with the loved one to which you’re providing care as they may begin to feel guilty and resentful. Whereas, with senior care and housing, you’re able to continue enjoying life right alongside your loved one without those caregiving burdens weighing on both of you.
For more information on funding senior care, download our Family Guide to Funding Senior Care & Housing today! Or contact us today to schedule a tour.